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#pounditThursday, September 29, 2022

DJ Uiagalelei benched amid Clemson offensive struggles

DJ Uiagalelei speaking

Clemson’s ongoing issues on offense appear to have cost starting quarterback DJ Uiagalelei his job.

With the Tigers trailing Pitt 21-7 in the third quarter of Saturday’s game, coach Dabo Swinney benched Uiagalelei and replaced him with backup Taisun Phommachanh.

It was impossible to blame Swinney for making the change. Uiagalelei’s issues go well beyond Saturday’s game. He has just four touchdowns on the season, and was just 11-for-23 for 101 yards with two interceptions on Saturday at the time of his benching. The assessments of the Clemson quarterback have been brutal all season, and it’s been a long fall for a player viewed as a Heisman contender before the season started.

Phommachanh, a sophomore, was a four-star recruit in the class of 2019. He played sparingly in both 2019 and 2020, with this being his first real look in game action.

Photo: Clemson quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei talks with media in Clemson, S.C., September 27, 2021.
Dj Uiagalelei Clemson Quarterback

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